In the last year or so, Seattle has become a tight seller’s market with a low inventory and a common occurrence of multiple offers per house for sale. Many buyers have described it as an all-out war trying to buy the house they want. Owners who waited out the housing recession are more than willing to engage in a bidding war in an attempt to get the highest offer.
The following are some good real estate tips for both buyers and sellers in the Seattle market. These real estate tips can also be applied to many of the surrounding real estate markets like Tukwila, Renton, Sea-Tac, Burien and more.
1.Decide what you can compromise on. Of the three big factors: condition, location and size, which one isn’t as important as the other two? In most cases, you’ll need to compromise on one of them.
2.Understand what you can actually afford in this market. Because the real estate market is so tough in these areas, agents and sellers look at every detail of competing offers, and larger down payments often win out as many houses are unlikely to appraise at the price being offered.
3.Be patient and don’t give up too soon. Losing the house you thought was perfect can be a crushing disappointment at the time, but it’s important to keep looking. During the time you’re looking, you can also save extra cash for a bigger down payment.
4.Find out what the seller wants. Knowing what constitutes the perfect offer to a seller can be half the battle. In a seller’s market, the buyer cannot make too many demands on an offer and expect to win the house if there are multiples. In some cases, it’s simply the highest, in others, the most cash, and sometimes they just want a quick closing.
1.Price your house competitively. Most properties in this market are getting multiple offers, but if you price your house too high to start, you may not get the right bites.
2. Be clear about what you want and where you won’t compromise. If you need a quick closing or the ability to rent the house for two months from the buyer, make sure to have this communicated so you can get an offer that meets your conditions.
Listings dropped by 10 percent in Seattle’s market in 2016, but demand remained high and is expected to increase in 2017.
When you’re a homeowner, you want to increase the value of your property as much as possible. Although you may not be moving in the near future, the value can be slowly improved over the years. Take a close look at how you can increase your home’s real estate value by mixing in both low-cost and investment options.
Swapping Out Fixtures
Unique real estate tips often involve clever ways to update a space without a large investment. Swapping out fixtures, such as lamps and electrical switches, are quick ways to increase the home’s value. This same concept applies to the kitchen too. Add new handles to cabinet doors and change the sink faucet. Although every other item in the area may be vintage, prospective buyers will only focus on the bright and new additions.
Refine the Landscape
The front yard is the first property space that’s seen by buyers. Trim the grass, plant a tree or start a flower garden. There are countless accents that you can add to a landscape as long as they remain neat. In addition, maintain a native look by choosing plants that only belong in the region. Trying out a desert landscape in a snowy region will only fail as the seasons change.
Install a Cool Roof
An investment that really impacts the home’s market value is a new roof. A typical rooftop lasts about 20 or 30 years. If your home is nearing that time frame, add a cool roof to the structure. Along with improving the home’s aesthetics, a cool roof also offers better energy efficiency. Your real estate investment will stay cooler in the summer while retaining warmth in the winter.
Extend the Living-Room Space
Smart, real estate tips include the perception of size. You want the home to look large, but the square footage may be lacking. Add an exterior deck just outside of the living room’s sliding glass door. With the curtains or blinds wide open, the living room seems to expand as you move between the interior and exterior.
In the past, homeowners often added a room onto the structure in hopes of increasing market value exponentially. This renovation idea doesn’t always offer the best return for your dollar. Remodeling an attic or basement will usually give you a better value for the investment. Pick and choose projects through the years that please you, and prospective buyers will be thrilled to benefit from them in the future.
There are quite a lot of residents in Seattle looking for strong growth in 2017, and the city is poised to have a good year. This article explains how soaring credit ratings in a strong economy are fueling home buyers, and buyers must be aware of how the market will grow. There are three main factors everyone must be aware of, and each one plays a large part in the way the city will grow in 2017.
#1: The Market Is Growing Everywhere
New York has seen record prices for over a year now, and large cities around the country are growing in value steadily. Seattle is one of the largest media markets in the country, and it brings with it a large real estate market. The city will naturally grow with the rest of the country, and everyone in the city will benefit from growing values as they sell.
#2: Buyers Are Willing To Make Purchases
Checking credit ratings, credit repair services and proper financial management allow buyers to make offers on homes readily. They are walking the city with pre-approval letters that help with shopping, and sellers know their buyers are capable of purchasing the house. Prices remain steady as sellers spend little time on the market, and buyers do not lose money paying for a home they do not want.
Credit reporting allows everyone to move on from a home quickly, and they are no longer left with a significant chunk of money they cannot afford. Credit reports remain stable, and each new buyer or seller is allowed room to shop. Quick turnover in the market helps keep prices up, and buyers who move into an area quickly force prices to rise sharply.
#3: The Area Is Beautiful
Seattle is alluring in every way as it attracts buyers to the area every year with its amenities, mountain background and a large city in which to play. The University of Washington is in the city, and there is a large market for Pac-10 sports.
The Seahawks and Mariners bring quite a lot of business to city, and there is pride in the city for its sports teams that is no found elsewhere. Everyone moving to the city gets sucked into its sports culture, and the home of Starbucks is not far away. The technology industry lives just above the city, and Canada is not far away. There is everything a family may want within minutes of the city.
Everyone moving to Seattle may take advantage of a growing credit market that ensures buyers and sellers are ready to make sales. There is nothing stopping a new buyer, and a seller may find their own new home moments after the contract goes out.
Having access to an MLS database can put you one step ahead of the the market in pursuit of a home. So what exactly is and MLS? MLS stands for “Multiple Listing Service” and it’s a database of homes or properties for sale. These databases typically populate major real estate listing sites like Realtor.com, Redfin.com and the many others you see online but don’t always hold all of what’s available in the market. Generally speaking, it’s always smart to work with a broker, since they have direct access to more listings and will help you jump on great opportunities.
So how do you navigate real estate listings, find the best deals, and win big? I’ll take you through a couple points below:
Have your ducks in a row
Simply put: get pre-qualified. This should be your first step if you’re seriously considering a home because it’ll impact your next moves in a few ways. Being pre-qualified means a lender has evaluated your financial picture, including income, debt, and assets and feels that you’re qualified for a home at a certain price. Sellers want to know you’re serious and have pre-qualified for a mortgage, and one step further, have a pre-approval letter from the lender as well. In very competitive markets, a buyer with a mortgage can be at a disadvantage compared to partial or all cash buyers. All cash deals are quick and easy and don’t involve outside lenders to help the buyer. So, the lesson here is to have that pre-qualification, and if you want to make yourself shine a bit brighter, a pre-approval letter from the mortgage company willing to back you financially.
Be in front of the pack
Coming across a fresh listing will hopefully put you ahead of the competition. But don’t think a quick pick up out of the gate will give you a great deal. New listings tend to be priced high, with the idea of a seller decreasing the sale price over time depending on buyer interest and comped properties in the area. However, there’s always a chance of properties priced far below their actual value! In a very competitive market, these little blips on the radar can happen, so a ‘shark’ like attitude is necessary when pursuing listings. Additionally, you never know the circumstances of the seller; there may be underlying reasons as to why they are pricing a home so low.
Be the last
So I first spoke of being ahead and now I’m talking about being last? I hope to not confuse you, but there’s a reason for this. According to a recent Forbes article, selling a home can take time, and could cause a great deal if isn’t sold in a timely manner. In some cases, sellers could own two homes, two mortgages, and a financial burden rising every month. Because of this, prices are lowered and good deals pop up. Ask your real estate agent to send over properties past 6 months on the market, with the hope of finding one of these great deals.
These are just a few ideas to consider when starting the search for a home. Having a real estate broker, a good idea of your financial situation, and an understanding of how to approach listings in the MLS database will set you in a solid place for finding a great home.